Before and After, Interiors, Kitchen

Removing a Wall in Your Kitchen: One Kitchen 4 Ways

Removing the wall between a dining room and a kitchen has been popular for at least 30 years – I’m sometimes amazed that there are still walls up in most of the houses I visit!   I know that having things open is not for everyone and there are quite a few homes where taking out the wall just doesn’t make sense.  If your home is well proportioned and has a generous eat-in kitchen – having a formal dining room may be appealing.  However, a lot people don’t have anything remotely close to that.  Let’s take a look at a home I’m working on now that was built in the late 1980’s and currently has a dining room in a room that was meant to be an enclosed family room.

Galley Kitchen
This is the current layout which is virtually the same since the home was built in 1986 – the dining room has the best views in the home and it is not only shut off from the kitchen by a floor to ceiling partition, it’s also enclosed by doors.

In addition to removing the wall between the dining room and the kitchen, the homeowners want a larger counter height island and a small vegetable/bar sink.  We discussed the possibility of creating a built-in dining nook at the windows in the dining area, but they prefer the flexibility of chairs.

Kitchen with an island and peninsula
Knocking out the wall in between the dining room and the kitchen creates a room with very little walls to anchor things on.  Walls are great for putting refrigerators, pantries and cupboards against and a kitchen with few walls is a bit problematic.  To help alleviate the floating kitchen feel; we could join two walls at the north of the plan.
kitchen with two penisulas
Here’s a variation – still using the north wall as a place to anchor the taller cabinets and appliances.  I like this one because the island is situated looking out towards the view – rather than back into the house.
kitchen remodel
This one’s called “The Flip” – it’s a what if we had a lot more money in the budget and flipped the entire space around?  It’s also a bit of a “what would I look like with plastic surgery” scenario.  It is helpful to think about the space from a few different angles before committing to a design to better inform your decision.  Moving a kitchen to a different location is something you see a lot on HGTV but it’s not something that the average person can afford to do.
kitchen renovation golden colorado
This layout fixes the lack of direct access to the bedrooms and bathroom problem of the other layouts.  It doesn’t have quite as much usable wall space but there is still plenty of storage.

The ideas at the front end of a project are a lot of fun to generate and talk about.  It’s easy to move things around at this stage so why not dream big and see what you come up with?  Sometimes you’ll go through this exercise and realize what you have isn’t so bad after all and other times you’ll hit on an idea that changes the way you think about your house.

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